As some of you know I am a Positive Discipline Parent instructor, I work with the tools PD has to offer on a daily basis. Today for instance, I decided I was not going to nurse my 20 month old daughter to sleep anymore for nap time. I have been getting quite frustrated with her tugging, pulling, and trying to run off and play while nursing. She is also just using me as a pacifier. In addition, it just plain hurts me anymore to do so.
I decided after 2 painful nursing sessions today, that I was just done, I couldn’t physically or emotionally handle the stress of nursing anymore. For nap time I got all the little ones set in their places for nap. They all do really well staying in their place and going to sleep on their own. Except my daughter. I got her bed ready and decided to lay beside her while she went to sleep. After 30 seconds of that game she decided it was time to nurse. I firmly told her “NO, I love you, But no. We are not going to nurse anymore.” She melted. She went into a screaming frenzy. She tried to pull my body around into a nursing position, pull me up into our chair we sit in. Occasionally she would walk away waiting for me to catch her but I just lay next to her spot and acted like I was getting ready to sleep, as this was the desired action I wanted.
I would open my arms up to her, and ask “would you like to lay with me” a blood curdling shriek was my reply as she shook her head and yelled “NO!” to my face. Again and again she tried to get me to nurse her. I would just continue to tell her every minute or so “I love you, but, we are not nursing anymore”
After 20 minutes of hearing my daughter make torturous sounds (to which the other children actually fell asleep to) she began to flop her body over mine and make distorted sounds, and faces to get my attention. I ignored them, I didn’t say a word. 10 minutes later she flopped on my chest, sobbing and grunting. I rocked her while she lay on me. And she fell asleep
Many times during this, I almost caved. I almost cried to see her feeling hurt and cry so much. I am the mother, I should be the one protecting my child. I felt guilty, not giving her what she wanted. But nursing caused me stress and physical pain. she didn’t need it for food, so it was an ok time to stop. She came to me when she was ready to lay down. She never went far, mainly stood at my side in toddler defiance
I know it will happen again tonight at bed time, and tomorrows nap. I also know, (as I had to do this once before with my 5 year old) it will get better, the screaming will be less and less. One day, she will do it all by her self, like the rest of the children in her class.